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Hotel Boot Drying and Western Resorts

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

Allow me to introduce myself since this is my first post.

 

I am 21 yrs old and usually ski with my dad. We live in the northeast, and frequent mostly Okemo, Stratton and Killington. Pretty much we only do day trips, but we get a decent amount of them in a given ski season (go up at least every two weeks). However, during my spring breaks we like to go for a longer stay to a mountain that we rarely visit. Two years ago it was Whiteface, last year it was Stowe. So here are my two questions:

 

Last year when we stayed at Stowe, we were in the Stowe Mountain Lodge. The place is gorgeous and we got a great last minute deal. The best thing about the place is that they take your boots for the night and dry them. In the morning you just give the ski valet a call and when you came down to the slopes they hand you warm ski boots and your skis and you were good to go. No more trying to dry the boots with a hotel hair drier. Do ski valets like this, more specifically with the overnight boot drying, exist elsewhere? This was a great service and am wondering if it's unique to Stowe. 

 

Which leads me to my next question. This year we're thinking bigger. We have never skied out west and would like to consider trying it on our spring break trip. Do you guys have any suggestions on where we should go? It's hard to judge our abilities, but we love skiing blacks and double blacks, trail such as Polar Bear and Kidderbrook at Stratton, and any trails underneath the Gondola at Killington come to mind. New England glades are not our thing as my dad doesn't want to splatter his brains on a tree, and frankly we are never in VT when there is enough good snow to ski glades. I was looking at Mammoth, and Big Sky, but I'm open to your suggestions. This trip would probably be around the second week of March for like 3 to 4 full skiing days. 

 

Thanks for your input, I appreciate your comments. 

post #2 of 19

I carry my own "Peet" boot dryer.

post #3 of 19

Welcome to EpicSki!

 

There are plenty of portable boot dryers.  Don't make the valet thing a factor in your decision.  You should probably consider ease of air travel.  Many people recommend flying to Salt Lake City or Reno due to availability and pricing of flights.  These are major airports near multiple world-class ski resorts.

post #4 of 19
You can buy a boot bag with dryer built in. Search for heated boot bag

Sent from a HTC Droid Incredible running CM 10.1
post #5 of 19

Don't let the boot dryer be a deciding factor, buy a portable dryer, or just take the liners out for the night and they will be dry.  Seriously, don't sweat it.

 

I definitely recommend skiing out West, its a different world and even if you are a good skier  you may be humbled.  the recommendations of Utah (Salt Lake) or Tahoe (reno) are solid, my advice is to watch the snow reports and try to go to a palce that has good snow conditions, even if you don't get the best possible deal.  Western skiing is great any day, on a great snow day it's sublime. 

post #6 of 19
I own a portable boot drier but rarely use it. I just pop my liners out-no valet needed. I actually don't want my boots in someone else's care overnight.
post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by piotrek21 View Post

Allow me to introduce myself since this is my first post.

 

I am 21 yrs old and usually ski with my dad. We live in the northeast, and frequent mostly Okemo, Stratton and Killington. Pretty much we only do day trips, but we get a decent amount of them in a given ski season (go up at least every two weeks). However, during my spring breaks we like to go for a longer stay to a mountain that we rarely visit. Two years ago it was Whiteface, last year it was Stowe. So here are my two questions:

 

. . .

 

Which leads me to my next question. This year we're thinking bigger. We have never skied out west and would like to consider trying it on our spring break trip. Do you guys have any suggestions on where we should go? It's hard to judge our abilities, but we love skiing blacks and double blacks, trail such as Polar Bear and Kidderbrook at Stratton, and any trails underneath the Gondola at Killington come to mind. New England glades are not our thing as my dad doesn't want to splatter his brains on a tree, and frankly we are never in VT when there is enough good snow to ski glades. I was looking at Mammoth, and Big Sky, but I'm open to your suggestions. This trip would probably be around the second week of March for like 3 to 4 full skiing days. 

 

Thanks for your input, I appreciate your comments. 

Welcome to EpicSki!  Having learned to skied in the northeast long ago and now living in the southeast, my big ski trips are always to the Rockies.  Got a chance to spend a week at Big Sky last Feb.  Loved it even without stellar snow conditions so going back in March.  Took the chance to check out Bridger too since that's only 20 min from Bozeman.

 

While Mammoth is a fine destination, many other great places are easier to get to from the east coast.

 

Any particular reason you didn't mention Utah?

post #8 of 19

Portable boot dryer = win.  The ones with a fan are faster; mine broke and then I got a passive one (just little heater things that slip into the liner).  Works, but takes overnight rather than just a couple hours.

 

EpicSki has a group trip going to Big Sky the third week in March, just sayin'...

 

If you don't mind booking last minute, you can try to go wherever gets the most snow over the next couple months.

 

SLC and Denver are the easiest places to get to from Boston (tons of direct flights to Denver, a handful to Salt Lake), then maybe Reno (Lake Tahoe).

post #9 of 19

You'll like Big Sky.  There's plenty of all kinds of terrain.  Kidderbrook would be a green circle there.  Nothing in the East is anything like Lone Peak.  Big Sky is pretty isolated and quiet after the lifts close, if that's important to you.

I have a portable boot dryer, but I never bother to bring it out West.  The air is dry enough to dry them if you pull the liners out.

I've never been to Mammoth.  I'm sure it's great, but I think conditions are more reliable in Utah, Colorado and the northern Rockies.

 

BK

post #10 of 19

Like Mattias said - the passive boot heaters work fine - take boots off and stuff them in, then pull out in morning when you're ready to go. Used them for years. Some of the obscessive/compulsive types here make things up, but I've had them in Lange, Head, and Technica stock lines, and Intuitions and never had an issue. If the boots are real wet I just put a sock at the top of the boot to keep more heat in.

 

Anyway, coming from least coast, do UT since you can get an early flight and ski the same day, and get a late flight out, and again get most or all of a day in so what would be a 4 day ski holiday can now be a 6 day. Compared to Flatton, Nokemo and K-Mart you're going to have an epiphany about skiing in general (don't expect to be satisfied on the ice coast again), particularly if you get a good day at AltaBird or Snowbasin.

 

Anyway search the billions of "where to ski / stay / eat / /drink / buy lift tickets etc threads on SLC to get a feel for it.

post #11 of 19

Just about anywhere out west will have good skiing, the two biggest factors (as others have mentioned) are snow conditions at the time you go, and ease of travel. Salt Lake City is probably the easiest, and you have 4 distinct area: Big and Little Cottonwood canyons, the Park City/Canyons/ Deer Valley area, and the areas near Ogden, Snowbasin and Powder Mountain. Coming from near the NYC area myself, I have found airfare to Denver the cheapest, last time I looked it was round $260 r/t.  Plenty of good ski areas in Colorado but from everything I have heard, at the moment the snow is on the lean side. Into Reno for Tahoe isn't bad, but airfare will probably be much higher than Denver. You could also do the Pacific Northwest, Mt. Hood is pretty cool and very close to Portland.

 

Mammoth is an extra flight to get to, which is good and bad.  Like going to Steamboat and Sun Valley, the extra work to get there seems to give the reward of less crowded slopes.  Same with Big Sky; it can be a PIA to get there, but you'll never have a crowd (although with the University in Bozeman, spring break could be pretty busy)  Hope this helps!

post #12 of 19

Interesting way to start a thread.  I do remember one time in Park City when the condo we rented had boot dryers.  I also remember leaving hair dryers running for hours while playing cards in Frisco, CO.  (and they were still wet in the morning)  But anyway....

 

The three cheapest flights for me are almost always SLC, Denver, and Spokane or Reno.  Sometimes Albuquerque. If that holds true for you then you can access about 40 mountains that way.

 

Nothing beats Salt Lake City to Park City for access.  Can't beat it.  It's just ridiculously convenient.  You fly in.  The weather is always just fine in SLC.  Then you hop in a rental car and you are in Park City in less that 40 minutes from the moment you leave the airport.  And it's all highway.  And you get three huge mountains in a 6 mile area.  Really really good choice.

 

Denver:  Winter Park, Loveland, Summit County (Keystone, Copper, A-basin, Breckenridge), Vail, Beaver Creek are all pretty accessible from Denver.  The rest of Colorado is a lot longer.  But those that I've listed require a very comfortable shuttle or rental car.  The weather can be rather difficult sometimes, but again, it's all highway.

 

From Spokane, others can chime in, but Schweitzer Mountain, Idaho is an economical and seemingly very nice mountain within a convenient 80 mile drive from the airport.  There are a couple other spots near Spokane if you are road tripping, and across the border Red Mountain is not far away to the north.

 

From Reno, you have all of Tahoe at your disposal: about 10 or 12 mountains.  All are fairly convenient.  Less than 2hrs each.  I recall it being between 1 and 2 hours to South Lake Tahoe from the Reno airport.  Mammoth Mountain is considerably farther and is not really easily accessible from other airports- which is why it will probably remain the best resort I won't ever go to.  Why drive past ALL of Tahoe just to ski one mountain?  I know it's big, and worth skiing, but man, how do you go past the others if you haven't skied there yet?

 

Anyway, the choices are pretty endless.  For the record, Big Sky is on my bucket list.  One of these years I'll spend a whole week there.  Enjoy your trip out west.

post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by piotrek21 View Post

...I was looking at Mammoth, and Big Sky, but I'm open to your suggestions. This trip would probably be around the second week of March for like 3 to 4 full skiing days. 

 

Thanks for your input, I appreciate your comments. 

 

info for mammoth...

 

havin a great snow year! just came back from a 3 dayr, 1st day was loose pack every where inspite of no real snow for a couple weeks. Hard surface was almost impossible to find.

2nd and 3rd days were fresh snow - got tracked out quick because it's been the 1st sgnificant 'fresh' in 2 wks. But there was plenty to be found, even on the 2nd day. Wkend crowds were much smaller than normal, Monday was deserted - relatively, it's a huge, broad mtn area with multiple peaks.

advantages: has 270 degree lay of terrain - so something is always wind sheltered and something is always great conditions. Steep upper mtn means less issues with mixing skier/bdr skill levels. Huge intermediate terrain selection.

4 base/midmtn lodges - all with excellent selections of food types - vegetarian or real meatasaurous, asian or mexican or italian, or soup/sandwich, also have good pho....

good cell reception on all of the mtn (if that important)...

relatively low lattitude, so afternoon when visibility/light becomes flat happens a little later than areas further north. March daylight savings time extends that an hour more.

main base lodge at 8800 ft, summit at 11,000 ft+, so snow stays relatively dry for long periods after snowfall.

mostly moderating temps - typical winter/March temps are high 20's at base lodge, mid 10's at summit - but it can get windy at the top - prevaling coming from the west, so when you drop into the runs/chutes the wind mostly goes away - but the wind does provide some great 'blow' fillin when it hasn;t snowed for a while.

March and April are the traditional heavy snow months - as in 12 ft or more per.

nightlife is prolly good

large selection of restaurants for evening meals

free town shuttle from most places in Mammoth Lks to the 3 primary base Lodges - so no need to drive while in town.

 

tough - as I said, sometimes breezy,

flying in from LAX happens, but when there is significant weather, they don;t fly, so a 4 hr drive from LAX.

post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bode Klammer View Post
 

Kidderbrook would be a green circle there. 

 

BK

 

To tell the truth, BK is stretching it a bit. Kidderbrook is at least a light blue. A very very pale shade of blue. 

That said, go to SLC. Start with LCC (Alta & Snowbird), then BCC (Solitude & Brighton). If you still have time go and check out either the PC trio or the two up by Ogden (Snowbasin & Powder Mt.).

 

If you are OCD about boot dryers. Stay @ the Cliff @ Snowbird. They have individual Williams A4 boot dryers installed in your very own private ski locker. 

 

Mod note: removed a link to site at site owners request. 

post #15 of 19
post #16 of 19

That looks like it could have uses outside of skiing...

post #17 of 19

Fly to Mammoth from Los Angeles and stay at Mammoth Mountain Inn at the Main Lodge or stay somewhere at the Village, the Mammoth airport rarely closes from weather. Mid March the skiing should be great. The special boot treatment that you received at Stowe is normal at the high end Lodges, like Stein Erickson Lodge at Deer Valley. I travel with a set of Dry Stix that work just fine and cost about $25, or use the hotel hair dryer.

post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xela View Post

That looks like it could have uses outside of skiing...

 

 

Like what? worthless.gif

post #19 of 19
A bunch of hotels now have lockers with boot dryers in them. Sky hotel at aspen is one. Aspen is great in march for skiing and the townies a blast.
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